Destination Barcelona experiences an exceptional increase in the number of destinations, companies, and services with the Biosphere certificate

11/11/2020 - 10:45h

The OTB publishes the fourth capsule of the 2019 Barcelona Tourism activity report, which includes information on international positioning, culture, and leisure and sustainability in Destination Barcelona.

  • Destination Barcelona was first in delegates’ number and fourth in meetings’ number according to the ranking of the International Congress & Convention Association (ICCA).
  • In 2019, the 10 most frequented points of interest in Destination Barcelona experienced a +2.2% increase in the number of visitors.
  • The employment in the tourism sector represented 12.0% in Destination Barcelona, while tourism companies, 14.4% of the total.
  • The number of companies, services, and destinations with the Biosphere Certificate increased by +46.2% and 400 companies and services were holding the Biosphere Commitment Distinction.

The Barcelona Tourism Observatory: city and region has published the fourth capsule of the 2019 Barcelona Tourism activity report, which provides data about the three geographical levels that the OTB covers: Barcelona city, Barcelona region, and Destination Barcelona. This capsule contains three chapters with data on international positioning, culture and leisure, and general information on Destination Barcelona.


International positioning

In 2019, Destination Barcelona hosted 159 international meetings (-2.5%), which brought more than 156,000 delegates (+16.3%). These figures placed Destination Barcelona in the 4th position in meetings’ number and the top position in delegates’ number according to the International Congress and Convention Association (ICCA).

On the other hand, Destination Barcelona was ranked 17th in the GDS Index (Global Sustainability Index), three positions lower than in 2018, despite almost maintaining the same score as the previous year (-1.0pp).

As for the number of passengers in the destination’s infrastructures, Barcelona achieved good positions in 2019. The number of cruise passengers in the Barcelona port (+3.2%) made the port retain the 1st place in the ranking of the main cruise ports in the Mediterranean, while Barcelona airport was ranked 6th in the European airports' passengers ranking, with a +5.0% increase and 1 position over the previous year.


Culture and leisure

If we analyze the evolution of the 10 busiest places of interest in the Barcelona Destination, we observe that there was an increase in visitors (+2.2%).

Sagrada Familia, Park Güell and the Monastery of Montserrat were the three most visited heritage sites in Destination Barcelona during 2019.

As for the natural parks, the most frequented were the Delta del Llobregat Areas, the Montseny Natural Park and the Sant Llorenç de Munt i l'Obac Natural Park.

The number of sports events spectators (more than 3.7 million) also experienced an outstanding increase, of almost half a million compared to the previous year.


Economic indicators

In 2019, 14.4% of companies were engaged in the tourism sector and they employed 12.0% of the workers in Destination Barcelona. Noteworthy is that the weight of the tourist sector was more important in Barcelona city than in Barcelona region: in the city, the tourist companies were 15.2%, which represented 13.6% of the employment.


Sustainability in Barcelona Destination

The number of companies, services, and destinations with the Biosphere Certificate went from 13 to 19 during 2019, which meant an increase of +46.2%.

In addition, 400 companies and services were holding the Biosphere Entity Distinction. By typology, accommodation companies were more than 1 in 4 and, by regions, el Maresme (16.3%), el Barcelonès (12.5%) and el Garraf (11.3%) were the most represented.


Barcelona Tourism Activity Report 2019 - Capsule 4



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